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The Oxford Book of Death, edited by D. J. Enright (Oxford University Press, 2008)

Amazon | excerpt

From the publisher:

The inescapable reality of death has given rise to much of literature’s most profound and moving work. D.J. Enright’s wonderfully eclectic selection presents the words of poet and novelist, scientist and philosopher, mystic and sceptic. And alongside these “professional” writers, he allows the voices of ordinary people to be heard; for this is a subject on which there are no real experts and wisdom lies in many unexpected places.

Also: The Oxford Book of Dreams:

In this rich anthology, Stephen Brook has collected hundreds of dreams recorded by authors, poets, psychologists, and everyday dreamers since pre-Christian days. Ranging from Artemidorus’s crude, 2nd-century analysis to Freud and Jung’s dream psychology, and including works by Coleridge, Yeats, Tolstoy, D.H. Lawrence, Joseph Heller, and many other authors, The Oxford Book of Dreams offers an intriguing and varied sampling of humanity’s collective unconscious. It explores the inexhaustible fascination of dreams and their power as a great source of literary inspiration.

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    Reality is not always probable, or likely.

    --Borges

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